A recently published article details the synergies between the new ISO Standard 26000 Guidance for social Responsibility and the Earth Charter. The article was written on behalf of the Earth Charter International Secretariat. A similar analysis was also carried out elucidating the synergies between the Earth Charter and the Global Reporting Initiative and the Global Compact.
The voluntary International Standard ISO 26000:2010 Guidance for social responsibility aims to be a first step in helping all types of organizations, in both the public and private sectors, to achieve the benefits of operating in a socially responsible manner. The push towards sustainable development by supplementing the economic perspective with a broader, comprehensive approach to sustainability has been recognized by the International Standards Organization as vital, and that approach is well encompassed by the Earth Charter.
The Earth Charter rejects the widely held idea that economic development is an end in itself. It supports the view that economic institutions and activities depend on a healthy planet and people and they should ensure equitable human development. They should value and protect Earth’s ecological systems and the many services they provide.
While the ISO 26000:2010 and the Earth Charter originate from different areas, their focus can be seen as mutually supportive. The ISO 26000:2010 is intended to be useful to all types of organizations in the private, public, and non-profit sectors. The Earth Charter, through its principles and the Earth Charter Initiative, seeks to reach all members of the global community. Both organizations strive toward the holistic goal of sustainability by promoting values which enable actors to maximize their contribution to sustainable development.